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Questions

Delphi House of Questions was an EU Culture 2000 project by three EXARC members. Under this umbrella, other EXARC members as well collected and answered the most frequently asked questions by visitors to archaeological open-air museums. The largest part of this collection of questions you can find here – as many of them still carry importance. In most cases we offer the questions both in the original language and in English.

In the Iron Age, how many people lived in one house (NL)?

About 10 people, a family group with not just mom and dad and the kids, but as well aunts, uncles, nephews and nieces et cetera. People did not get old in those days; averagely maximum 35 years. The child death rate was high as well - that is why the families were not that large.

What language did people speak in the early Middle Ages (NL)?

The language spoken in the Netherlands in the early Middle ages we now call Old Dutch. It’s actually a collection of dialects which were spoken in the Low Lands between 600 and 1200...

What tools were used to work mammoth tusks, bones and so on? Did people use special tools for prehistoric art (CZ)?

We do not know about any special tools or more exactly we cannot recognize them. Prehistoric craftspeople and artists probably used tools common to their time; of course they could have had their own tools made especially for such use...

Was book printing a Dutch invention (NL)?

Absolutely not! The oldest printed books we know originate from China, where people printed books with wooden blocks as early as the 8th century. The oldest dated book, dated by its maker, is the Chinese “Buddha’s Diamond Sutra”: May 11th, 868. It is one of Buddhism's greatest treasures...

What can the study of pre- and protohistoric pottery contribute to the knowledge of the contemporan society (FR)?

Analysis of pottery gives us the possibility to answer questions concerning functional, economical and social aspects of the groups, having produced this ceramics...

What contacts existed between the inhabitants of the lake fortress and other countries (LV)?

In the Early Middle Ages, active trading contacts developed in Latvia, also involving the inhabitants of the lake fortress. Imported jewellery and parts of weapons have been found in the cultural layer...

Is the invention of the wheel the oldest invention (NL)?

For sure, people invented many other things earlier, like for example the use and keeping of fire. As many inventions, the wheel was first seen in the Near East, about 8,500 years ago. But these wheels were used as slow turning potter’s wheels. Pottery was already an old technology back then...

Are baking plates, typical for the middle and late Neolithic cultures of western Europe also known from the younger Neolithic (FR)?

Baking plates are known from the Cerny- und Chassey-cultures, the Bourgogne middle-Neolithic and the Michelsberg-culture, ca. 4500-3500 BC). Their use seem to stop abruptly around 3500 BC caused by another way of baking bread. Maybe from this time onward, people used to bake directly on hot ashes , hot stones, pots or the inner walls of furnaces...

How did they warm the houses in the early Middle Ages (NL)?

With wood and turf. A hearth can be found in virtually all excavated houses. Often this is a round spot with a lot of charcoal and orange burned clay. The hearths sometimes were constructed on small platforms...

What games did Roman children play (NL)?

A wide variety of Roman games are known. These games vary from the simple throwing of nuts in a pot (Orca), to Roman rugby (Harpastum) and even chariot races with two hoops on a stick.

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